If you're planning to visit Meerssen, we have some must-see hotspots you won't want to miss. Some are obvious gems, while others are more like diamonds in the rough. Head out, see the sights, and let the diversity of Meerssen surprise you. Discover tranquil green oases and cultural heritage attractions. And don't forget to snap a selfie at these hotspots and share your discoveries with the world. #visitzuidlimburg
Don't miss these highlights!
Basilica of the Blessed Sacrament, Meerssen
The Basilica on the market square is also known as the 'showpiece of Mosan Gothic'. The middle section was built around 800 in Romanesque style by Charlemagne. Between 1320 and 1340, monks from Reims built the lower chancel in Gothic style (from the pulpit towards the altar). The middle section was later adapted to this style. The Basilica partially burned down in 1465 and in 1649 the church tower was partially destroyed in a storm. In 1773, it was demolished completely. The Basilica underwent two full restorations in the twentieth century. In 1938, Pope Pius Xi conferred it the status of basilica.
The synagogue was built between 1851 and 1853 after a design by renowned architect J.L. Lemmens from Beek. On 17 July 1853, the synagogue was officially opened to the Jewish community for services. This ended during the Second World War, when nearly all Jewish residents of Meerssen were deported, after which the synagogue fell into disrepair. In 1989, a large-scale restoration of the Meerssen Synagogue was launched by the Dutch government, the provincial government, and the Municipality of Meerssen. The bronze doors were created by Maastricht artist Appie Drielsma and bear the names, dates of birth, and dates of death of the Jews who lived in Meerssen during the war.
The historic Proosdij park is a stunning park with a pond, ancient trees, and numerous works of art. The restored Watervalderbeek can be seen to the left of the park entrance. The source of the Watervalderbeek can be found in the beautiful nature of the Waterval hamlet (Ulestraten). The brook winds through the natural surroundings and disappears just outside Meerssen, where it continues underground. It resurfaces once again and flows into the park. At the end of the park, the brook disappears underground once more and ultimately resurfaces south of Meerssen, where it flows into the Geul.
Sint Martinuskerk Geulle
The Church of St Martin in Geulle aan de Maas, is believed to have been built in 1250. As is often the case, the history of this church has its own unique history. In 1298, the abbot of Kornelimünster in Geul (the old name for Geulle) appointed a pastor. In 1307, Geul was an ecclesia integra (a mature and self-sustaining church community) in the Suestra (Susteren) deanery. Given the fact that most of these 'mature' churches were also old, it can be assumed that St Martin's Parish would have been established long before 1250 and would have had its own church or chapel.
The Heritage House (Erfgoedhuis) introduces visitors to the beautiful and exclusive culture and nature of Meerssen and the surrounding area. It hosts exhibitions about Meerssen's history, as well as art exhibits and lectures on a wide range of themes. The Heritage House also boasts a Corinthian capital (180-220 AD), one of the largest Roman treasures in the region. The capital was discovered in 1871 at the Roman Villa Herkenberg.
The original estate was built around 1725 in Louis XIV style. A few old walls near the park wing are all that remains of this original building. Behind the main building, a beautiful courtyard is surrounded by a manor farm, one wing of which boasts a coach house. Next to this house is a park with two ponds, created in the early twentieth century to beautify the older landscape park, which dates from around 1800.
Over the centuries, the Meuse river transformed Limburg into a unique and fascinating landscape with a tangle of old river channels, meanders, dikes, forelands, and flora and fauna. Historic cities and prominent villages testify to a past interwoven with the Meuse. Grab your bicycle, slip on your walking shoes, and discover the new cross-border (tourist-recreational) nature area of RiverPark Maasvallei.
The oldest wine-growing area in the Netherlands can be found along the flanks of the Wijngaardsberg in the Limburg village of Ulestraten. Grape vines have grown here since 968, following the ancient Roman road from Meerssen to Hunnecum. The vineyards existed until 1800 and were replanted in 2002. Wijngaardsberg wines are sold in first-class restaurants throughout the Netherlands and Belgium. Try them for yourself and discover the flavour of Limburg!
The Watervalderbeek emerges in the forest of the Waterval hamlet near Ulestraten. The many water sources in this forest have transformed it into a bubbling brook, which winds across the meadows of Waterval towards Meerssen before disappearing underground near the Pletsmolen water mill. The charming hamlet of Waterval is situated in a valley of the Watervalderbeek, between Ulestraten and Raar.
The Bunderbos, with its exceptionally rich and rare flora, is the steepest hillside forest in the Netherlands – so be sure to wear sturdy shoes! It is home to several water sources and bubbling brooks. The forest is a riot of colour in the spring, when primula, thimbleweed, pilewort, wild garlic, and many other flowering plants burst into bloom.
Burial chapel of Petrus Regout
The burial chapel of the Regout family near the Basilica was built in 1883 in a crypt, after a design by Petrus Regout. Petrus Regout (1801-1878) was a Maastricht industrialist and politician who lived at Vaeshartelt Castle, which was located in Meerssen at the time.
Share this page with your friends and family